Sweet and Spicy Pineapple Shrimp Stir Fry

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Sweet and Spicy Pineapple Shrimp Stir Fry is a skillet full of sautéed shrimp tossed in a spicy barbecue sauce with sweet chunks of pineapple and red peppers.

This quick and easy meal earns two thumbs up from my whole family every time I make it.

shrimp stir fry with over rice on a black plater

My favorite part of this meal? This whole recipe comes together in less than 15 minutes. Start some rice cooking before you start the shrimp and you’ll have dinner on the table in no time at all.

Like so many of our meals, the first time I made this recipe, it was inspired by the ingredients we had on hand, plus a craving or two.

BBQ Shrimp stir fry

Pineapple Shrimp

Pineapple and shrimp are a huge favorite around here. My middle son had been asking for shrimp, there was a sale on pineapple, and I had a jar of Sweet and Spicy Homemade Barbecue Sauce just waiting to be used. The combination of flavors was even better than I had hoped and it quickly became a family favorite.

I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve made this Sweet and Spicy Stir Fry. Every time shrimp is on sale, I start craving this recipe. It’s a 15-minute dinner that is a guaranteed win every time.

shrimp skillet

Bacon Bleu Cheese and Shrimp Chopped Salad, Bacon Wrapped Shrimp, Chili Lime Shrimp Bites, Spicy Orange Garlic Shrimp or Chili Garlic Shrimp (a cookbook favorite), and last but not least classic Shrimp Cocktail are all recipes we make over and over.

We LOVE shrimp and yet, I keep repeating these recipes. But first? You really do need to try this shrimp stir fry with pineapple and bell peppers. 

cooked shrimp in large skillet
What kind of shrimp will you need?

You can make this shrimp stir fry with or without removing the tails from the shrimp. I’ve made it both ways.

When cooking the shrimp with the tails-on, it makes for a prettier presentation. However, my go-to method is to cook the shrimp with the tails removed.

The final dish will be more kid-friendly that way and I like that it’s easier to eat for a quick dinner. Grab a frozen bag of deveined shrimp with the tails removed, or swing by the seafood counter, and this really is a lightning-fast meal.

pineapple and bell pepper shrimp skillet

Shrimp Stir Fry with Pineapple

Buttery sauteed shrimp, tangy sweet barbecue sauce, crisp hot peppers, and sweet pineapple combine in a truly irresistible meal. The fact you can make it in just minutes? That just makes it better.

You’ll start by rinsing the shrimp and patting it dry with a paper towel. Melt some butter in a large skillet and quickly cook the shrimp.

It should only take a minute or two. Take care not to overcook the shrimp. When the shrimp is light pink and cooked through, remove it to a plate.

bell peppers and pineapple with stir fry sauce in skillet

Stir Fry with Shrimp

Toss the peppers into the hot skillet with a bit of oil and cook until lightly browned and barely softened. Add the pineapple, toss with the peppers, and let it soften slightly, about 1-2 minutes.

Add the barbecue sauce, stir to coat everything, and increase the heat to high. When it starts to simmer, return the shrimp to the pan, toss everything together to coat well, and cook for about a minute as the sauce thickens slightly.

Remove from the heat and add the green onions. Serve by itself or over rice.

Pineapple, bell peppers, and shrimp - a quick and easy recipe made with sautéed shrimp, spicy barbecue sauce, pineapple, and red peppers.

Even if you aren’t partial to a spicy barbecue sauce most of the time, you’ll want a spicy sauce to balance the sweet pineapple in this dish. You can make your own sauce in just a few minutes or use your favorite spicy store-bought sauce.

I promise that the end result will not be too spicy. I’ve also used our spiciest barbecue sauce and there was barely a hint of heat to the dish when it was ready to eat.

Pineapple Shrimp Stir Fry

This shrimp stir fry with pineapple is a serious favorite. For another, even heartier shrimp stir fry that is a keeper, you’ll want to try this kielbasa and shrimp fried rice too.

Crisp hot vegetables, tender shrimp and just a hint of Sriracha makes this Shrimp and Vegetable Fried Rice another great option. I use my favorite skillet and this spatula when making stir-fries. The right tools really do make it easier.

Shrimp stir fry

For a few more great stir-fry recipes, check out this Thai Steak Stir Fry, and next time you have an abundance of summer squash in the house, this flavorful Southwest Chicken Skillet from The Weekday Lunches and Breakfasts Cookbook is a winner.

Korean Beef Bulgogi is another family favorite. When we were first married, we had a favorite Korean restaurant near the house. Sean usually ordered Bulgogi while I ordered Jap Chae.

Sriracha Honey Cashew Chicken and Chinese Beef and Broccoli are a couple more stir-fries that get two thumbs up every time we make them.

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Sweet and Spicy Pineapple Shrimp Stir Fry

5 from 19 votes
This stir fry starts with sautéed shrimp tossed in a spicy barbecue sauce with sweet chunks of pineapple and red peppers.
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Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 8 mins
Total Time: 23 mins
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients 

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 pound medium shrimp peeled and deveined
  • 1-2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 large red bell pepper chopped into bite-size pieces
  • 2 cups fresh pineapple sliced and cut bite-size or (1) 14 ounce can pineapple chunks, drained
  • ½ cup spicy barbecue sauce or your favorite spicy store-bought sauce
  • 3 green onions sliced thin

Instructions

  • Rinse the shrimp and pat dry with a paper towel. In a large skillet, over high heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Add the shrimp and spread across the pan in a single layer. Let it cook without touching it for about 1 minute. Flip the shrimp over and cook an additional minute. When the shrimp is light pink and cooked through, remove to a plate.
  • Reduce the heat to medium high and add a  drizzle of oil to the hot pan. Toss the peppers in the oil and let them cook until they are slightly browned and barely softened, about 2 minutes. Add the pineapple, toss with the peppers, and let it soften slightly, about 1-2 minutes. 
  • Add the barbecue sauce, stir, and increase the heat to high. When it starts to simmer, return the shrimp to the pan, toss everything together to coat well, and cook for about a minute as the sauce thickens slightly. Remove from the heat and add the green onions. Serve by itself or over rice.

Notes

Even if you aren’t partial to a spicy barbecue sauce most of the time, you’ll want a spicy sauce to balance the sweet pineapple in this dish. You can make your own sauce in just a few minutes or use your favorite spicy store-bought sauce. I promise that the end result will not be too spicy. I’ve also used our spiciest barbecue sauce and there was barely a hint of heat to the dish when it was ready to eat.
To make this a truly fast dinner recipe, I like to buy the shrimp peeled and deveined. If you’re working with shrimp in the shell, it will take a few extra minutes to prep it prior to starting the recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 287kcal · Carbohydrates: 28g · Protein: 24g · Fat: 9g · Saturated Fat: 4g · Cholesterol: 301mg · Sodium: 1302mg · Potassium: 351mg · Fiber: 2g · Sugar: 21g · Vitamin A: 1324IU · Vitamin C: 84mg · Calcium: 193mg · Iron: 3mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!

{originally posted 3/24/15 – recipe notes and photos updated 7/31/20}

stir fry with shrimp and bell peppers over rice on black plate
Sweet and Spicy Shrimp Stir Fry

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Andrea says

    I came across this recipe when I was looking for a way to use up some fresh pineapple. I don’t like spicy food, so I was skeptical of your comment that it wouldn’t be too spicy. I made your “Homemade Spicy Barbecue Sauce” anyway, and you were right, it was fine. I’ll be making this recipe again.5 stars

  2. Paulette Reeves says

    My sister made this for me and it’s delicious! She didn’t change a thing or add anything different. She used Sweet Baby Ray’s as suggested. It is a pet peeve when people add this or delete that. An insult to the chef, in my opinion.5 stars

  3. Sally says

    Has a kick but in a good way. Hubby loves it! After reading another review I cut back on the bell pepper- wish I had used the whole thing like In the recipe.5 stars

  4. Kat says

    Made this and everyone liked. I LOVE pineapple and this meal has a sweet and savory flavor. I did add Italian sausage links. When you list the nutritional info, are you figuring that per cup or an amount of ounces? attempting to record it!5 stars

    • Mary Younkin says

      I’m so glad that you love the recipe, Kat! The nutritionals are based on the total amount of food prepared following this recipe, divided by the listed number of servings.

  5. Kathy Mattioni says

    I thought this recipe was delicious. My husband enjoyed it as much as I did. Did not change anything. Will be making this again.
    Cookie5 stars

  6. Angie Spelman says

    YUMMMM!!! This was an easy and delicious weeknight recipe. My entire family loved it! I will definitely be making it again.5 stars

  7. Andrea Rose says

    I just made this and it’s delicious!! The only thing I did differently was add garlic and onion. I forgot it had green onions so I sautéed a yellow onion with the peppers. Oops! Still added the green onions and this is definitely a new favorite!5 stars

  8. Cheri says

    This was SUPER easy!! So good! I used the sweet baby ray’s sweet and spicy bbq sauce. I will def make this again and again! Thank you so much for a fantastic recipe5 stars

  9. Janette says

    Don’t eat shrimp so can you substitute chicken in this recipe? Will it still be as good as comments state. Thank you.

  10. Joanne Seilhamer says

    This was so quick and easy to make but very delicious. My husband took 1 bite and said this is a make again!5 stars